The RSPCA is urging owners not to leave their pets in cars or conservatories when theweather is hot.
Despite repeated warnings, a catalogue of incidents where dogs have been in serious danger of dying of heat exposure have been reported to the animal charity.
Cases of careless behaviour this summer include:
- A three-month-old male Rottweiler who died after being left alone in a conservatory last week
- Nine reports of dogs who were left in cars in the south west of England last weekend
- Two dogs who were rescued from a car at a showground in Kent earlier this month
- A dog who was tied to a lamppost and left in the hot sun with no water in Essex last weekend
- Two Staffordshire bull terriers who were rescued from a car in Nottingham last week
The RSPCA’s acting chief veterinary officer Steve Cheetham says: “A dog left in a car, conservatory, greenhouse, caravan or shed will quickly begin to suffer from heat-stroke and can die an agonising death.
“Owners must realise there isno safe way to leave a dog like this in warm weather,” says Steve. “Even when the weather is not particularly hot, dogs can quickly suffer from heat-stroke as up to 90% of their body is covered in hair. Leaving windows open and a bowl of water outis not enough.”
Remember these RSPCA tips for a safe summer:
- Even if you park your car in the shade, the position of the sun will change
- Young and elderly animals are more susceptible to heat
- Leaving windows open or putting a bowl of water does not help
- If a dog becomes overheated, give it a shower immediately or bath it in cool water
- Call a vet as soon as possible, as once the dog goes into shock and loses consciousness it may be too late
- Be aware thatanimals can suffer from sunburn, particularly white dogs and cats. Owners should cover any white extremities, especially ear tips, with the highest possible factor sun cream at least once a day and before the animal goes outside